Anne Lauries compares John Boehner and Daniel Patrick Moynihan:
Daniel Patrick Moynihan was our contemporary version of Finn McCool—not a demi-god like JFK, but a warrior and a schemer for “his people” against the cruelties and indifference of powerful outside forces. Danny Pat, ex-longshoreman, despite being a good Democrat, never held his pride so dear that he wouldn’t compromise with The Enemy, from LBJ (it wasn’t just ivory-tower DFHs who suspected Lyndon of a hand in Kennedy’s assassination) to Tricky Dick and Jerry the Klutz. But Moynihan always took great pride in being a capital-I Intellectual, a philosopher-scholar standing behind this year’s President like Aristotle behind Alexander. Being educated, well-read, capable of defending the side in the UN, writing books that would actually be discussed, not merely sold as vanity-press quasi-religious icons for willful illiterates to display in evidence of their tribal fealty—such things were important to the ambitious blue-collar Catholics of Moynihan’s generation.
Reading the recent spate of Boehner bios, Orange John seems to be working a lot of the same tropes for the next generation… but “intellectual”, for the ambitious modern politico, is an identifier only slightly less to be avoided than “pedophile”.
Ah, how times change.